Comedian Nalin Yadav claims he was treated like ‘criminal’ by police
Yadav said his earning had shrunk since the Indore incident in January and his attempts to overcome depression and serve his passion for comedy was being blocked by people, not allowing him to live normally
Comedian Nalin Yadav has alleged that he was frisked like he was a “hardcore criminal” by Indore police on Saturday night and was also warned not to step out of his house in the night. The police, however, said it was part of “routine” checking in wake of robberies in the area, and that Yadav has been asked to file a complaint in the matter.
Yadav, who was accused of hurting religious sentiments in January this year along with comedian Munawar Faruqui during a performance in an Indore restaurant, was going to a nearby eatery to get some good when the incident occurred. Apart from being frisked, he was asked to put his hands in the air and to show ownership documents of his two-wheeler.
Yadav claimed this was not the only harassment; and that he was targeted several times by saffron activists, local goons and even educated people in the last nine months. He said he did not file any complaints because he cannot fight many cases in the court.
“Not only this, I receive threatening and abusive calls on my social media almost daily. Recently, I posted something about Tripura violence and local people threatened me over the phone. They said I was an anti-Hindu and a sympathiser of only one community. I have to change my thinking otherwise I won’t be able to survive, I was told. Similarly, a few days ago I was harassed at a bar,” Yadav said.
Pithampur Sector 1 town inspector Lokesh Bhadouriya refuted the allegations, and said, “Due to a rise in robberies in the area, we have strengthened our checking after midnight. Police personnel checked him thoroughly to rule out the possibility of him being a thief. What is wrong with it? If the person has any problem, he can come to me to file a complaint but I haven’t received any complaint.”
Yadav said his earning had shrunk since the Indore incident in January and his attempts to overcome depression and serve his passion for comedy was being blocked by people, not allowing him to live normally.
“Two months ago, I saw a ray of hope when my show was finalised in Chandigarh, but at the last moment, the organiser dropped me and roped in two other comedians. Similarly, I got a contract for at least five shows in Indore but all were cancelled without any reason,” said Yadav.
Yadav says he has been working in a bags manufacturing unit as a daily wager to earn a living and visits New Delhi occasionally to perform for free in cafes to maintain his connection with the audience.
“A few months ago, I had lost all the hope but after media highlighted my plight, I received many calls and a new hope emerged. I am fighting hard but I don’t know for how long can I fight,” he said.
“Will they ever allow me to live a normal life? Even a murderer, who is out on bail has a right to live with freedom but I don’t have it because I am carrying a stigma imposed by saffron activists of being an anti-Hindu,” Yadav added.